How Clean Is Clean?

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of CuVerro. All opinions are 100% mine.

CuVerro sent me an ATP tool to test how clean our home is, and ever since I tested our bathroom faucet handle and it came back at more than 4 times the level considered “sanitary”, I’ve been thinking about what it actually means to be “clean”. We certainly clean our home regularly, but how clean is “clean”?

How clean is clean? Do you remember to clean frequently touched surfaces like doorknobs and keyboards when you clean your home?

I don’t feel like our home is dirty; we clean it regularly and I feel like we do a pretty good job cleaning. But this ATP tool has me thinking about the surfaces in our home that we don’t remember to clean as often. When was the last time you cleaned your doorknobs? I don’t know that I ever had unless it’s visibly dirty, or I know my hands were dirty when I touched it.

So I decided to test our doorknobs.


I swabbed the doorknob to our bathroom door and tested the swab using the ATP tool. If you don’t remember from the last time, an ATP tool is what the food and beverage industry uses to test machinery for hygiene and cleanliness; it tests for adenosine triphosphate, the energy molecule found in all living things, so it can detect if there is organic matter on a surface, even if it isn’t visibly dirty.

It turns out, the doorknob was DIRTY! Anything under 300 RLU is considered sanitary, so this doorknob was almost 5 times that!


I’m definitely going to add doorknobs to our regular cleaning routine!

I also tested my cell phone. I always have it with me, so I figured if our doorknobs are that dirty, my cell phone has to be even worse!


My phone wasn’t actually that bad. Certainly not “clean”, but I think I’m a little more aware of how often I touch my phone, so I tend to clean it more often than our doorknobs.

Can you guess what the dirtiest thing in our house was? Any ideas?


Yep. That is the baby’s teething toy. The toy DESIGNED TO GO IN HER MOUTH!

I’d like to think that most of what the ATP tool is picking up on the teething toy is actually AJ’s saliva. But I picked the giraffe up off the floor in order to test it, so who knows what other sort of dirt gets all over it when the baby isn’t chewing on it. Blech. I definitely need to remember to sanitize the baby’s toys more often!

So, how clean is clean? Nothing I tested was visibly dirty, but none of it was “sanitary” either. Stainless steel is often the metal of choice for things that people touch, like kitchen appliances, faucets, doorknobs, etc. but while stainless steel does a good job of looking clean, it isn’t necessarily any cleaner than any other surface.

But antimicrobial copper is different. It kills bacteria and keeps on killing it. Antimicrobial copper is EPA-registered and proved in testing to kill 99.9% of bacteria within 2 hours of exposure. EPA tests also prove that antimicrobial copper continuously kills bacteria – even after repeated contamination. How cool is that?!

How clean is clean? Do you remember to clean frequently touched surfaces like doorknobs and keyboards when you clean your home?

Just think, if you had antimicrobial copper in your home, it would be a lot easier to keep it clean. And even better, if it were in public places like schools, hospitals, gyms, etc., those could be much cleaner, healthier environments!

CuVerro has antimicrobial pens and cell phone cases at, plus a ton more info, so check it out.

And remember to do an extra good job cleaning the surfaces in your home that you touch often!

Disclosure: I received compensation from CuVerro and IZEA in exchange for my participation in this campaign, and my honest discussion of their products. But all opinions in this post are 100% my own. I would never write a post about something I didn’t think was useful or interesting for you guys, and Practically Functional will only publish sponsored posts for companies or products I love and believe in! 🙂



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Jessi Wohlwend

I believe that anyone can do crafts and DIY projects, regardless of skill or experience. I love sharing simple craft ideas, step by step DIY project tutorials, cleaning hacks, and other tips and tricks all with one goal in mind: giving you the tools you need to “do it yourself”, complete fun projects, and make awesome things!

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